My, that was quick.
The first job opening in college football has arrived before the first full weekend of games.
Jay Hopson stepped down as the Southern Mississippi head coach on Monday, sources told Yahoo Sports. He’ll be replaced by Scotty Walden, the 30-year-old co-offensive coordinator, who sources told Yahoo Sports will be the interim coach.
Hopson didn’t appear at the Southern Miss football building on Monday, as the staff was unsure whether he’d coach practice on Monday afternoon. He never made it there, meeting with the coaching staff around 4 p.m. ET to tell them he was out.
Hopson had a respectable 28-23 record and appeared in three bowl games in four seasons. But entering this season, Southern Miss opened with a home blowout loss, 32-21, to South Alabama in a game where the Golden Eagles were favored by more than two touchdowns.
Hopson was the dude who feuded with his AD about hiring Art Briles, so there may be more to this than just a bad opening week loss, but the guesswork about his replacement has already begun, and a couple of names look familiar.
Bruce Feldman ($$):
Another former Rebels coach who may get consideration is Georgia offensive line coach Matt Luke. He has lots of ties around the state. The Gulfport native is local. He’s still only 43. He was fired after three seasons with the Rebels but took over in very turbulent circumstances and steadied that program.
Either Monken or Luke would take a huge pay cut to jump to Southern Miss (“The school has been hamstrung by financial issues. Hopson’s $500,000 annual salary ranked lowest among Conference USA coaches last season.”), but if you want to scratch that head coaching itch badly enough, who knows?